Help Wanted: Community Relations Manager at New Bedford Public Schools


General Description:

The Community Relations Manager is responsible for strategic oversight and management of internal/external communication and external affairs for the New Bedford Public Schools (NBPS), supporting the Superintendent to inform and engage families, staff, partners and the public in district priorities, policies, practices, challenges, and opportunities.   The Community Relations Manager will serve as a key member of the Family Welcome Center.

Reports to:  Dr. Pia Durkin, Superintendent, New Bedford Public Schools


  1. Develop and implement a comprehensive communications plan that includes short- and long-term strategies for building stakeholder awareness about and support for New Bedford Public Schools’ work to ensure academic excellence among all students.
  2. Serve as the district’s lead contact and spokesperson with all print and broadcast media outlets, including researching, coordinating and responding to media inquiries regarding school-based and district matters.
  3. Involve the Superintendent, School Committee, and other school and district leaders in relevant media inquiries, and keep all parties updated on upcoming and ongoing news stories.
  4. Identify and pitch news story ideas through a range of proactive media strategies.
  5. Plan and coordinate media events and activities, including news conferences, press briefings, interviews, and other opportunities to inform reporters and editors about school and district issues.
  6. Assess and respond to the information needs of internal and external stakeholders of the NBPS, including work with legal staff to comply with public records laws and the Freedom of Information Act.
  7. Support the Superintendent in leading communication during crisis situations and unanticipated incidents, including timely dissemination of information to the media, families, staff and the community.
  8. Coordinate writing, editing, design, production and distribution of clear, concise, “family-friendly” print and digital materials (e.g., letters, brochures, articles, videos, fact sheets, fliers) to communicate the district’s goals and priorities to various NBPS stakeholders, including school-based and central staff, parents, students, partner organizations, community leaders and residents.
  9. Work with English Language Learners staff to ensure translation of external documents into major languages, and implement strategies to communicate effectively with all language communities.
  10. Collaborate with technology staff to write and update content on the district’s external website, social media tools and other on-line resources to ensure accuracy and consistency of information.
  11. Provide training and technical support to schools and NBPS central staff about communicating with media, families, and school communities, including crisis communications during emergency situations.
  12. Serve as NBPS liaison/advocate to government, business, and other community partners, providing information and resources to promote community engagement in NBPS.
  13. Serve as a member of the Superintendent’s leadership team.
  14. Perform other related duties as requested by the Superintendent.



  1. Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, Communications, Marketing or a related field
  2. 5 years experience in the public relations/communications/marketing field at varied levels and with increasing responsibility; or 5 years experience in print and/or electronic journalism
  3. Excellent writing, editing and verbal communication skills, especially in communicating complex policies and practices to diverse audiences
  4. Demonstrated skill in working with the media
  5. Working knowledge of digital communication tools, including website content management, e-marketing and social media
  6. Demonstrated ability to advise and support individuals at all levels of the organization
  7. Ability to prioritize competing demands


  1. Master’s degree in Journalism, Communications, Marketing or a related field
  2. Understanding of K-12 public education, particularly in an urban setting
  3. Familiarity with the City of New Bedford and the South Coast region of Massachusetts
  4. Experience producing publications, such as fliers, newsletters, reports, etc.
  5. Skills in graphic design

Terms and Compensation:

Full-time, non-union position.

Salary commensurate with experience, plus full benefits.

Application Process:

To apply, submit a cover letter, resume and three (3) letters of reference to:

Heather Emsley
Executive Director of Human Capital Services
New Bedford Public Schools
455 County Street, Room 120
New Bedford, MA 02740

Or via email to:

Application Deadline: Wednesday, July 9

Download this job description (PDF)

About Michael Silvia

Served 20 years in the United States Air Force. Owner of New Bedford Guide.

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